VISA Gets Tough

VISA International yesterday unveiled a new set of operating policies for e-commerce that aims at basic security practices. VISA also announced a Global Data Security Website to provide merchants with the capability to evaluate the security around their e-commerce systems in a safe, private location. The two announcements will set the stage for a larger security initiative to be announced shortly by VISA. The new consumer protection policies were adopted by the VISA International board this month and require web retailers to prominently display their privacy policy and on-line security capabilities. The new consumer protection policies also state that in the event of a valid transaction dispute, when the cardholder has made every effort to settle the dispute with the web merchant but is still not satisfied, the card issuer must provide a refund. VISA says the Global Data Security Website will also, eventually, include a global directory of security vendors that can assist e-merchants with meeting VISA standards.


1. Restrict access to data on a need to know basis.

2. Assign each person a unique identity to be validated when accessing data.

3. Track access to data, including read access, by each person.

4. Encrypt data maintained on databases or files accessible from the Internet.

5. Don’t use vendor supplied defaults for system passwords and other security parameters.


OPC Signs NY

Official Payments Corporation announced Tuesday the company has been authorized by New York State to provide a service which will enable its citizens to make balance-due tax payments, estimated tax payments, and extension payments, by credit card, via the Internet or telephone. Taxpayers in New York State will be able to make these payments by visiting [][1] on the Internet or by calling toll-free 1-800-2PAY-TAX(SM). The new payment channels for tax year 2000 are expected to go live early next year. New York State will publish information about the service in tax instruction booklets which will be mailed to taxpayers in January. Official Payments provides a variety of tax payment services to the Internal Revenue Service, the District of Columbia, and the states of Alabama, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Minnesota, Ohio, Oklahoma and Washington. “We are delighted to announce this new business in New York,” said Thomas R. Evans, Chairman and CEO of Official Payments, Corp. “New York represents a $6.4 billion personal income tax market opportunity for Official Payments. During the 1999 tax season we collected federal income tax payments from thousands of New York taxpayers and now those same people will be able to use our systems to make their state tax payments,” Mr. Evans, added.

Official Payments will charge New York taxpayers a convenience fee for processing these credit card transactions. The fee schedule can be found at [][2]. For example, a taxpayer who owed New York $900.00 and charged their taxes would find a total of $922.50 on their credit card statement: $900.00 for the tax bill and $22.50 for the convenience fee. American Express, Discover Card, and MasterCard are the credit cards accepted by the program. Taxpayers using credit cards with bonus rewards programs can, depending on their card’s program, earn rewards, points, and cash-back or airline frequent flyer miles for paying their taxes.

About Official Payments Corporation.

Official Payments Corporation is the leading provider of electronic payment options to government entities. The company enables consumers to pay government fees and taxes via telephone or the Internet, using their credit cards. The company has partnered with the Internal Revenue Service; several state governments, including Alabama, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma and Washington state; and over 550 municipal and county entities, in which it collects income taxes, property taxes, real estate taxes, parking fines, sales and use taxes and other government fees by credit card over the telephone and the Internet. In the 1999 tax year, Official Payments collected and processed over $575 million in federal income tax payments on behalf of the Internal Revenue Service. The company is publicly traded on Nasdaq under the symbol OPAY. Official Payments Corp. is committed to making payments to the government go fast, smart and safe.



PULSE Merger

The battle of building a national EFT network gained more intensity as TX-based PULSE and OH-based Money Station announced Tuesday they have agreed to merge. The news follows on the heels of the merger between the MAC and STAR networks. The PULSE acquisition will extend its footprint to the central, south, midwest and southwest regions of the United States, with a primary service area covering 20 states stretching from Tennessee to Colorado and from Texas to Minnesota and Pennsylvania. It will serve more than 2,500 member financial institutions, and expects to process more than 50 million EFT transactions monthly. Organized in 1983 and headquartered in Cincinnati, Money Station is owned by Dollar Bank, Fifth Third, Firstar, Huntington National Bank and Mellon Financial. Its membership includes more than 560 banks, savings institutions and credit unions with operations in IL, IN, IA, KY, MI, MN, MO, OH, PA, TN, WV and WI. PULSE, the fourth largest EFT network, serves more than 2,000 banks, credit unions and savings and loans. The PULSE system links an estimated 45 million cardholders with more than 46,000 ATMs and 254,000 POS terminals throughout the USA.


DoD Smart Cards

The U.S. Defense Manpower Data Center confirmed Tuesday it is set to roll-out 4.3 million ‘Common Access Cards’ using ActivCard’s digital identity infrastructure technology. ActivCard is being deployed worldwide by the DMDC to support the issuance and personalization of 4.3 million smart card-based GSA/CAC standard compliant DoD ID badges. To accomplish this, the DMDC has embedded ActivCard digital identity infrastructure software into 1,300 existing ‘Real-Time Automated Personnel Identification System’ workstations, which are installed in approximately 900 locations around the world, including the Pentagon, military bases, aircraft carriers, and other sites. The ActivCard software provides simultaneous and secure connections to two independently managed systems from which user applications and data are acquired. The first system is the DMDC’s ‘Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System’, containing information on over 23 million people. The second system is the Defense Information Systems Agency’s ‘PKI Certificate Management System’. The end result is a system that is deployed worldwide to issue CAC ID badges to all DoD employees and contractors. The new badges will support a wide range of functionality from building access to financial services to digital identity for access to government services and information containing personnel information and processing credentials that enable digital signature, encryption, and strong user authentication.


Smart Chip Snags Voelker

Smart Chip Technologies Inc., Tuesday announced the hiring of Phil Voelker as senior vice president, sales and marketing. The move represents the latest phase of a complete management restructuring that has created an executive management team with over 140 years of electronic payment systems experience.

“We are very excited that an executive with Phil’s experience has joined our team to lead our sales and marketing efforts,” said Jim Williams, SCTN president and chief executive officer. “Phil has a demonstrated capability of building and successfully executing diverse sales and marketing strategies. “The strong relationships that he has developed with many major technology companies and financial institutions will generate new opportunities for our company.”

Voelker comes to SCTN with over 25 years of experience in technical sales, marketing and client management. He most recently was senior vice president of sales for the Teleservices Division of First Data Corp. (NYSE:FDC) in Omaha, Neb. FDC is the world’s leading processor of credit and debit card transactions, supplying services to more than 260 million cardholders and 2 million merchant locations.

As an executive of FDC, Voelker was involved in all aspects of corporate operational planning, and annual and long-term strategic plan development. During his combined eight years with FDC, Voelker was responsible for over $500 million of new contracts and agreements for services in both the telecommunication and financial services markets.

Prior to joining FDC, Voelker has held other senior sales and marketing positions with Nortel, CCI and Honeywell.

Smart Chip Technologies Inc. (SCTN) is the dba of SCHIMATIC Cash Transactions Network, an applications service provider specializing in end-to-end loyalty and cause-marketing solutions. The company is using its patent-protected methodology and its technology to move businesses and consumers from magnetic stripe cards to multiple-application smart devices. SCTN merges the virtual world with the physical world on a single database platform, allowing seamless loyalty solutions for both on- and off-line transactions. Further information can be accessed via the corporate web site, , by contacting Smart Chip Technologies at 801/685-7676, 740 East 3900 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84107 or by writing Smart Chip Technologies at


MoneyMaker Management

The 7th largest ATM network in the USA is beefing up its management. The ‘MoneyMaker’ ATM network has hired a number of new executives including people from the ‘MAC’ network and MasterCard. ‘MoneyMaker’, was recently acquired by Genpass Inc. and is headed by industry veteran Bipin Shah. Bonnie Hill, former top executive at the ‘MAC’ ATM network, has been hired as SVP for Strategic Planning. Douglas Miraglia, formerly SVP at MasterCard, will serve as SVP of Sales and Marketing. Genpass/MoneyMaker has also hired Ronald Bucelli, Martin Pinder, Bonnie Pollard, Richard Schmalbach, and Leah Work as sales and account executives. Bucelli was former SVP for business development of Integrated Delivery Technologies. Pinder is former president of FI Tech Services, a merchant card processor. Pollard was a sales executive with the Concord EPS/MAC network. Schmalbach previously headed sales and marketing at FI Tech Services. Work comes from EDS.


Indentrus Hires Two

Two senior executives with deep experience in financial services and e-commerce security have joined Identrus LLC, the world’s leading provider of identity trust for global business-to-business Internet commerce. Khaja E. Ahmed, formerly of ValiCert, becomes the company’s chief technology officer, and Peter J. Cerra, formerly of MasterCard, becomes vice president of product management. “Accomplished executives like Khaja and Peter will help Identrus maximize the opportunities presented by our growing number of financial institutions and technology partners,” said Identrus President and CEO Guy S. Tallent. “We look forward to their success.”

Khaja E. Ahmed, chief technology officer

Ahmed has made a career of applying security technology innovations to real-world business problems. He is responsible for enhancing the performance, reliability and user experience of the Identrus global trust system. In 1992, Ahmed developed a 35,000-user system for the IRS that secures taxpayer data. Over the last decade, he was consulted on the development of several projects in information security and public key infrastructures (PKIs) for the U.S. Navy, Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and the Department of Treasury. In 1999, as director of engineering at ValiCert, he managed the engineering team that developed the first global multi-protocol certificate validation service. He has also worked on some of the industry’s first security solutions based on smart cards and other tokens.

Ahmed started his technology career with his own systems consulting business in India in 1986. For the past 10 years, he has focused on information security. At ValiCert, he was responsible for the ValiCert Validation Authority and Transaction Authority products. From 1990 to 1995, he worked for a New Hampshire startup called Datamedia Corp. through its acquisition by AXENT Technologies Inc., a leader in information security. Ahmed, who has taught computer architecture at the master’s level, earned a master’s degree in computer information systems in 1990 from New Hampshire College and an MBA in marketing in 1985 from Pune University, India. He was valedictorian in both programs. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Osmania University in 1982, also in India.

Peter J. Cerra, vice president product management

Cerra has more than 16 years experience in helping new technology companies succeed. He has been involved in numerous smart card implementations around the globe during the decade he spent in that industry. As vice president of product management for Identrus, Cerra is responsible for developing new products and integrating financial institutions into the Identrus system. Prior to joining Identrus, Cerra spent four years as vice president of smart card product and technology integration at MasterCard International. He was responsible for bringing the company’s smart card business development efforts to member financial institutions in the United States and Canada. In addition, Cerra served for one year as president of Mondex USA, the electronic cash company’s franchise for the United States territory.

Before joining MasterCard, Cerra spent eight years at AT&T in a series of project management, new product development and product marketing roles. During his tenure there, he directed the implementation of a pioneering smart card-based electronic toll collection initiative in the State of California on behalf of AT&T Smart Card Systems and Solutions.

Cerra earned a bachelor’s degree in humanities from Saint Mary’s University, Baltimore, Md., in 1977. Additionally, he is serving a second term on the Smart Card Forum Board of Directors.

About Identrus

Identrus, announced in April 1999, for the first time enables businesses to manage their business-to-business e-commerce risks through a trusted relationship with their financial institution. Identrus also enables corporate trading partners to eliminate the time, cost and complexity of building trust relationships with counterparts around the world. Identrus’ legal and technical infrastructure is based on a set of uniform system rules, contracts and business practices for comprehensive trust and risk management. The infrastructure is open to financial institutions, their corporate customers and security vendors around the world. For more information, please visit [][1]



Global Account Management

Equifax Card Services has teamed up with Fair, Isaac to provide account management technology solutions for Equifax’s credit card clients on a global basis. Equifax will use Fair, Isaac’s ‘TRIAD 6.0’ adaptive control system, which includes automated decision software, predictive models and consulting for several account management decision areas. Using ‘TRIAD’, multi-channel card issuers will now have the ability to improve account management profitability for their portfolios worldwide, while conveniently processing every account through one system. Fair, Isaac says the Equifax contract follows a recently signed global ‘TRIAD’ contract with Citigroup. Citigroup will use ‘TRIAD’ to manage customer relationships in Asia, Latin America, Europe and the United States. Specifically, Citigroup will rely on ‘TRIAD’ to support its collections, credit line management, card transaction authorizations management and other business areas. Fair, Isaac says companies using ‘TRIAD’ have experienced a 25 to 30% increase in sales; 15 to 25% reduction in bad debt; 20 to 25% reduction in recovery resources; and a 15 to 25% increase in interest income.


3Q/00 CardData

Early portfolio results for the third quarter continue to point to a strong period of receivables and volume. WI-based Associated Card Services reported 3Q receivables of $468,775,690 compared to 2Q/00 receivables of $428 million. 3Q/00 volume for Associated also hit $133,830,561 compared to $118 million for the second quarter. Meanwhile BB&T reported 3Q receivables of $533,572,000 compared to $493 million for 2Q. BB&T 3Q/00 volume logged in at $317,917,000 compared to $295 million for the second quarter. The third quarter portfolio stats are gathered by CardData ([][1])



Royal Aquarium VISA

The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre is making a big splash these days with a new Royal Bank affinity credit card partnership. The aquarium’s new affinity card, offered in Visa Classic, provides marine life supporters with a simple, convenient way to link buying power with philanthropic habits. Each time the new card is used, various local ecological programs benefit through a marketing agreement that contributes funds to the aquarium’s coffers.

“This partnership will help support the aquarium’s focus on public awareness and education,” said Dr. John Nightingale, president of the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre. “With financial resources, we can help to ensure these environments remain a great place to live for future generations.”

The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre, in Stanley Park, is a self- supporting, non-profit association dedicated to the conservation of aquatic life. Canada’s first public aquarium opened its doors in 1956, eventually becoming the biggest aquarium in the country and among the five largest in North America.

“We’re delighted to be working with Royal Bank to help further the conservation of our aquatic and ocean environments,” added Nightingale.

Accredited by the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums and by the American Zoo and Aquarium Association, the Vancouver Aquarium was designated Canada’s Pacific National Aquarium by the Canadian federal government. Internationally recognized for excellence in display and interpretation, the aquarium’s international research and rehabilitation projects range from marine mammals to reptiles.

“Many Canadians like Royal Bank’s affinity cards because they are a simple way to enhance revenues for the non-profit sector,” said Pierre Giroux, Royal Bank’s senior manager, affinity cards. “The cards provide organizations with a payment each time a new card is issued and every time it is used for a purchase. Affinity cards are an easy way for Canadians to supplement their support of some favourite causes.”

Royal Bank of Canada (RY) is a diversified global financial services group and a leading provider of personal and commercial banking, investment and trust services, insurance, corporate and investment banking, online banking and transaction-based services including custody. The group’s main business units include Royal Bank, RBC Dominion Securities, Royal Investment Services, RBC Insurance and Global Integrated Solutions. The group has 49,000 employees who serve 10 million personal, business and public sector customers in 30 countries. For more information, visit Royal Bank’s Web site at .


Late Summer Rally

Revolving consumer credit surged significantly during August following two months of conservative growth. According to preliminary figures released Friday by the Federal Reserve, Americans added more than $7 billion in outstanding revolving credit during August, compared to $3.7 billion in July and $5.8 billion in June. Since the beginning of this year, American consumers have tacked on nearly $50 billion in total revolving consumer debt. Overall consumer credit is now growing at a 10.9% rate, according to the FRB. At the end of August, American consumers were $1.485 trillion in debt, exclusive of home mortgages.

Aug00 Jul00 Jun00 May00 Apr00 Mar00 Feb 00
%GRWTH: 13.5% 7.1% 11.2 12.7 13.5 13.8 9.4
$OWED: $645.6b 638.4b 634.7 628.9 622.5 615.5 608.5

Jan00 Dec99 Nov99 Oct99 Sep99 Aug99 Jul99
%GRWTH: 18.5% 12.5 10.2 -0.5 0.0 2.5 12.1
$OWED: $605.0 595.8 589.8 584.3 584.5 584.5 584.6

Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 10/06/00;
For complete historical data visit


Smart Campus Access

Schlumberger Test & Transactions, a business segment of Schlumberger Limited, announced its Smart Campus Access solution for college and university campuses that are seeking to secure their intellectual property and promote safety and convenience for a superior student lifestyle. A typical implementation of the Smart Campus Access solution includes an end-to-end suite of smart cards, readers, terminals, software and professional services that seamlessly integrates advanced network security, campus auxiliary services and on- and off-campus convenience applications.

Today’s higher education system is operating in a totally new paradigm on the digital frontier, embracing technologies that transform information, and reaching out to students who live on campus or 2,000 miles away from it. With the rapid rise of e-culture, the university system has become a bellwether for innovation, seeking out those advanced solutions that promote the highest caliber of education, while attracting the best students and instructors. The Schlumberger Smart Campus Access solution provides value across the entire campus environment. For campus administrators, it delivers a solid source of value-added revenue, as well as cost savings and security. Auxiliary campus services such as using smart cards to pay for parking, laundry, copiers, vending machines, and meal plans help generate revenue from proven rise in spending, as well as providing a safe and convenient cashless environment. Additionally, the management of campus-based services is greatly simplified by the use of a single card as a physical ID and for digital credentials. Information technology administrators will find that the Smart Campus Access solution brings added efficiencies and cost savings through its integrated architecture. With Smart Campus Access technology, routine help desk support tasks, such as assisting with lost passwords and log-on problems which take up as much as 20-30% of network administrative time are dramatically reduced. The automated computer sign-on management provided by the Smart Campus Access solution eliminates uncertainties, while offering greater security of campus information.

For students and faculty, the Schlumberger Smart Campus Access solution is a convenient and easy-to-use secure ID token for both physical access to the campus and logical access to the network. The card can be used for banking and calling card accounts applications, and for stored value purchases at campus food service locations, vending and laundry machines, copiers, bookstores, convenience stores, parking and e-commerce sites. Students can use their Smart Campus Access card to securely access their academic transcripts or medical records, cast a vote in campus elections, or simply order a pizza. “Intellectual property is a university’s most valuable asset,” said Jack Mapes, director, Schlumberger e-Campus Solutions, North America. “Today’s conventional model of online security, based on firewalls and passwords, is no longer a cost effective solution for campus administrators. Password systems and their derivatives are extremely costly to maintain and vulnerable to hacker’s attack.”

According to Mapes, the advanced cryptographic features of the Smart Campus Access card combined with a PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) provide the strongest security protocols available today, with onboard RSA-1024 keys. A student’s digital credentials reside in the tamper-resistant chip of the card itself, allowing the user to securely self-validate or “sign” for medical records, transcripts, and course material.

Since 1995, Schlumberger has been North America’s only single source for total smart card-based solutions for more than 20 college and university campuses. Schlumberger provides a complete solution from concept development and planning through implementation and operation. The Schlumberger e-Campus offering includes cards, readers, point-of-sale (POS) terminals, software application development, installation, project management, training, marketing services, consulting services, card issuing, implementation and transaction processing.

About Schlumberger

Schlumberger Test & Transactions provides consulting, integration and products for testing and measurement of semiconductor devices, smart-based transactions, IP (Internet Protocol) network security and wireless services. With 1999 revenue of $1.2 billion and over 7000 employees in more than 40 countries, it is a business segment of Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB), a global technology services company with 1999 revenue of $8.4 billion. More information is available at [][1].